WHAT LOVE IS NOT

MAY 13

“Love . . . isn’t always “me first,” Doesn’t fly off the handle, Doesn’t keep score of the sins of others, Doesn’t revel when others grovel, Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth…”  1 Corinthians 13:4-6

Love Test:

Today

…did I put someone else’s needs or desires ahead of my own?

…did I get my way despite what other’s wanted?

…did I lose my cool and verbally attack another?

…did I react rather than act to someone else?

…did I remember what that person did to me last week, last month, last year?

…did I feel that it was alright to cheat “a little” because everyone else does?

…did I enjoy seeing someone else suffer because of their attitude?

…did I feel more important because someone else failed?

…did I rejoice when one of my flaws were exposed?

…did I quiver when I suspected that someone saw me in a wrong attitude?

Everyone seems to be asking, “What’s wrong with this upcoming generation of kids?”  or  “How can we prevent these tragedies from happening again?”

Some say, “Give them more freedoms”.  Others say, “Take away more rights.” But the Bible says, “Learn to love, God’s Way.”

Take the test, it’s a practice quiz. One day, you’ll be asked the questions that will determine your eternal destiny.  How you answer, or better yet, how you live will count toward your final grade.

            Pastor Don

 

Grandpa was celebrating his 100th birthday and everybody complimented him on how athletic and well-preserved he appeared.

“Gentlemen, I will tell you the secret of my success,” he cackled.  “I have been in the open air day after day for some 75 years now.”

The celebrants were impressed and asked how he managed to keep up his rigorous fitness regime.

“Well, you see my wife and I were married 75 years ago.  On our wedding night, we made a solemn pledge.  Whenever we had a fight, the one who was proved wrong would go outside and take a walk.”



PRECISION WALKING

MAY 12

“Be good to your servant, God; be as good as your Word. Train me I good common sense; I’m thoroughly committed to living your way. Before I learned to answer you, I wandered all over the place, but now I’m in step with your Word. You are good, and the source of good; train me in your goodness” Psalm 119:65-68 The Message Bible.

            I have always admired those precision drill teams that are a part of our Armed Forces. One of my favorites is at Arlington National Cemetery where the tomb of the Unknown Soldier is located. The constant guard over that tomb and the precision in which they march back and forth, and especially during those times, when they change the guard are amazing.

            WE are told that the men in these drill corps spend so much time marching with their squad, that they know what the other will do without even thinking. That takes long hours of practice marching as well as time spend getting to know each other’s movements.

            This passage from the Psalms speaks of our lives without Christ, “wandering all over the place.”. But then after knowing God, it says that I am walking in step, in rhythm with Him.

            Now the only way we can walk in that precision step is to spend time with Him. Practicing His movements and obeying His commands. In order to be in Step with His Word means to daily walk in that Word.

            One of the best physical exercise programs is a simple regiment of walking through the neighborhood. It is also good for the spiritual exercise. Where are you walking with Jesus today? Will it produce a “precision” walk with Him? You may never guard the tomb of the Unknown Soldier, but you will guard the heart of someone near to you. Let your walk be in order with God.

            -Pastor Don

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Why God Created Animals

A newly discovered chapter in the Book of Genesis has provided the answer to “Where do pets come from?”

Adam said, “Lord, when I was in the garden, you walked with me everyday. Now I do not see you anymore. I am lonesome here & it is difficult for me to remember how much you love me.”

And God said, “No problem! I will create a companion for you that will be with you forever & who will be a reflection of my love for you, so that you will love me even when you cannot see me. Regardless of how selfish or childish or unlovable you may be, his new companion will accept you as you are & will love you as I do, in spite of yourself.”

And God created a new animal to be a companion for Adam. And it was a good animal. And God was pleased. And the new animal was pleased to be with Adam & he wagged his tail. And Adam said, “Lord, I have already named all the animals in the Kingdom & I cannot think of a name for this new animal.”

And God said, “No problem! Because I have created this new animal to be a reflection of my love for you, his name will be a reflection of my own name, and you will call him DOG.”

And Dog lived with Adam & was a companion to him & loved him. And Adam was comforted. And God was pleased. And Dog was content & wagged his tail.

After a while, it came to pass that Adam’s guardian angel came to the Lord & said, “Lord, Adam has become filled with pride. He struts & preens like a peacock & he believes he is worthy of adoration. Dog has indeed taught him that he is loved, but perhaps too well.”

And the Lord said, “No problem! I will create for him a companion who will be with him forever & who will see him as he is. The companion will remind him of his limitations, so he will know that he is not always worthy of adoration.”

And God created CAT to be a companion to Adam. And Cat would not obey Adam. And when Adam gazed into Cat’s eyes, he was reminded that he was not the Supreme Being. And Adam learned humility.

And God was pleased. And Adam was greatly improved. And Dog was happy. And the Cat didn’t give a hoot one way or the other.

 



GOD KNOWS YOUR NAME

MAY 11

“If each grain of sand on the seashore were numbered and the sum labeled “chosen of God,” They’d all be numbers still, not names; salvation comes by personal selection. God doesn’t count us; he calls us by name.”  Romans 9:27     The Message Bible.

How many PIN or identification numbers do you have to remember and use each day.  At the Bank I am known more by my account number than my name.   When I go to Taco Bell, I’m patron number 113.  When I go to make a payment at Sears, the sign says, “take a number please.” And even at the DMV, you wait for them to call your number to go to a numbered window, to get your new license number. 

I now have five telephone numbers by which I can be reached, and one number automatically pages a second number so I can call a third number and get the message sent to the first number.

But God knows me by name.  No account numbers.  No order of waiting number.  No calling number.  He knows my name.

My Mother and Father love me dearly, but because I am not home as much as I should be, they often call me by my brother’s name. I used to know when I really had their attention when they used my “FULL” name…. You know first, MIDDLE and LAST… 

But God knows my Name. And He knows YOURS.  He loves to use it to show how well He knows you and everything about you.  He loves to call it to salvation. 

-Pastor Don

 

 

Medical Notations:

The following quotes were taken from actual medical records as dictated by physicians…

By the time he was admitted, his rapid heart had stopped, and he was feeling better.

The patient has been depressed ever since she began seeing me in 1983

The patient is tearful and crying constantly. She also appears to be depressed..

Discharge status: Alive but without permission.

The patient will need disposition, and therefore we will get Dr. Blank to dispose of him.

Healthy appearing decrepit 69 year-old male mentally alert but forgetful.

The patient refused an autopsy.

The patient has no past history of suicides.

The patient expired on the floor uneventfully.

Patient has left his white blood cells at another hospital.

The patient’s past medical history has been remarkably insignificant with only a 40 pound weight gain in the past three days.

The patient had waffles for breakfast and anorexia for lunch.

Between you and me, we ought to be able to get this lady pregnant.

The patient was in his usual state of good health until his airplane ran out of gas and crashed.

She is numb from her toes down.

While in the ER, she was examined, X-rated and sent home.

The skin was moist and dry

Occasional, constant, infrequent headaches

Coming from Detroit, this man has no children.

Patient was alert and unresponsive.

When she fainted, her eyes rolled around the room.



GOD’S PERFECT PLAN

MAY 10

“Starting from scratch, He made the entire human race and made the earth hospitable, with plenty of time and space for living so we could seek after God, and not just grope around in the dark but actually find him.  He doesn’t play hide-and-seek with us.  He’s not remote; he’s near. We live and move in him, can’t get away from him!  Acts 17:26-28  The Message Bible.

Someone said that God made the world and universe in direct proportion to the size He had planned for man.  God’s details are so intricate that is seems strange that anyone could think that we suddenly have “evolved” from some other lesser beings. 

It is amazing that the same individuals who teach that we came from lower life forms, that have risen to new heights, think that we are continuing to rise in our moral decay as a nation.  But then, I guess the truth is that we see everything upside down from God.  What is “right” in our eyes is usually “wrong” in God’s agenda.  What is “wrong” in the eyes of society is usually “God’s ways”.

But God made all of creation to perfectly fit together.  He had a plan long before He breathed on the face of the deep.  He planned to have a close relationship with His creator.  He desires to keep a hands on approach to our lives.

God is always there…. He’s not playing hide-and-seek.  He wants to be known.  So if you have a problem, or a crisis, or even just a question, don’t worry, He is right there waiting to give you the answer.

Perhaps my life verse is this last one, “In Him we live and move and have our being…”.  The Message says, “We live and move in him, can’t get away from him!”  No matter how far you run, how high you go, how low you stoop, you cannot get far enough away from Him for Him to be out of reach.  Reach out today.  He is right there.

            Pastor Don

 

Who’s The Smartest?

            There was a tiger, who woke up one morning, and just felt great  (yes,just like Tony the Tiger). Anyway, he just felt so good, he went out and cornered a small monkey and roared at him:  “WHO IS THE MIGHTIEST  OF ALL THE JUNGLE ANIMALS?” And this poor quaking little monkey replied:  “You are of course, no one is mightier than you.” 

            A little while later this tiger confrontrd a deer, and just bellows out:  “WHO IS THE GREATEST AND STRONGEST OF ALL THE JUNGLE ANIMALS?” The deer is shaking so hard it can barely speak, but manages to stammer: “Oh great tiger, you are by far the mightiest animal in the jungle.” The tiger,  being on a roll, swaggered, up to an elephant that was quietly munching on some weeds, and roared at the top of his voice: WHO IS THE MIGHTIEST OF ALL THE ANIMALS IN THE JUNGLE?”

            The elephant grabbed the tiger with his trunk, picked him up, slammed him down; picks him up again, and shakes him until the tiger is just a blur of orange and black, and finally throws him violently into a nearby tree.  The tiger staggers to his feet and looks at the elephant and says: “Man, just because you don’t know the answer, you don’t have to get so mad.”



HAVE YOU USED YOUR BLESSING TODAY

MAY 7

I saw a sign today that said, “Have you used your Smile today?” 

  I asked myself,  “Have you used your Blessing today?”

  It is a real challenge to use the Blessing Greeting in today’s world.  Many think it quite odd that someone would greet them “I am Blessed!”.  Others are awakened to the reality that they indeed are Blessed. And there are even those who occasionally just “grunt” back, having not really wanted to know, or care to know how you really are.

  But I can’t help but realize how Blessed it makes me feel, just to Bless someone else.  I enjoy Blessing You.  Paul wrote to the Colossians and told them, “For I want you to know what a great conflict I have for you and those in Laodicea,. . . that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, and attaining to all riches of the full assurance of understanding……” (Col 2:1-2 NKJV)

  I just want to know that the burden of my heart these days is to encourage you in the Lord, that you may feel the close pull of His Love, and receive the wonderful supply of rich understanding of who God is in you.

  Today in your Day of Prayer, ask God to let you have just a little larger glimpse of His Care for you.

 

 

Ryan: Why did you chop the joke book in half?

John: Mom said to cut the comedy.

 

Erin: What did the mother bullet say to the daddy bullet?

Fran: What?

Erin: “We’re gonna have a BB!”

 

Joker: Why did the monster’s mother knit him three socks?

Harvey: I have no clue.

Joker: She heard he grew another foot!



FOCUSED ON GODS WORD

MAY 6

 “William H. Hinson tells us why animal trainers carry a stool when they go into a cage of lions.  They have their whips, of course, and their pistols are at their sides.  But invariably they also carry a stool.  Hinson says it is the most important tool of the trainer.  He holds the stool by the back and thrusts the legs toward the face of the wild animal.  Those who know maintain that the animal tries to focus on all four legs at once.  In the attempt to focus on all four, a kind of paralysis overwhelms the animal, and it becomes tame, weak, and disabled because its attention is fragmented. (Now we have more empathy for the lions)” [Quoted in John Maxwells’, Developing the Leader Within You.

   Recently, I have realized that it’s time to get my priorities in line with God’s Word more than ever.  It’s too easy to get distracted by the many “legs” thrust at us each day.  Lord help me stay focused on You and Your Will…………

 

 

Son: Dad, do you know the difference between a pack of cookies and a pack of elephants?

Dad: No.

Son: Then it’s a good thing Mom does the grocery shopping!

 

Sunday school teacher: Tell me, Johnny. Do you say prayers before eating?

Johnny: No, ma’am, I don’t have to. My mom’s a good cook.

 

Doug: I think my mom’s getting serious about straightening up my room once and for all.

Dan: How do you know?

Doug: She’s learning to drive a bulldozer.



MORE LIFE QUESTIONS

MAY 5

  1. What impossible thing am I believing and planning for?
  2. What is my most prevailing thought?
  3. What good thing have I previously committed myself to do that I have quit doing?
  4. Of the people I respect most, what is it about them that earns my respect?
  5. What would a truly creative person do in my situation?
  6. What outside influences are causing me to be better or worse?
  7. Can I lead anyone else to Christ?
  8. In what areas do I need improvement in terms of personal development?
  9. What gifts, talents, or strengths do I have?
  10. What is one thing that I can do for someone else who has no opportunity to repay me?

    John L. Mason, An Enemy called Average

 

 

Mom No. 1: How do you get your sleepy-head son up in the morning?

Mom No. 2: I just put the cat on the bed.

Mom No. 1: How does that help?

Mom No. 2: The dog’s already there.

 

Baby snake: Mommy, are we poisonous?

Mother snake: Yes, son.Why?

Baby snake: I just bit my tongue!

 

Chris: Why is a computer so smart?

Mom: It listens to its motherboard.



TOP TEN QUESTIONS

MAY 4

 “Here are some important questions we should ask ourselves:”

  1. What one decision would I make if I knew that it would not fail?
  2. What one thing should I eliminate from my life because it holds me back from reaching my full potential?
  3. Am I on the path of something absolutely marvelous, or something absolutely mediocre?
  4. If everyone in the United States of America were on my level of spirituality, would there be a revival in the land?
  5. Does the devil know who I am?
  6. Am I running from something or to something?
  7. What can I do to make better use of my time?
  8. Would I recognize Jesus if I met Him on the street?
  9. Who do I need to forgive?
  10. What is my favorite scripture for myself, my family, my career?

     John L Mason, The Enemy Called Average

 

 

WHAT MY MOTHER TAUGHT ME

My mother taught me about WEATHER: “It looks as if a tornado swept through your room.”

My mother taught me THE CIRCLE OF LIFE: “I brought you into this world, and I can take you out.”

My mother taught me about BEHAVIOR MODIFICATION: “Stop acting like your father!”

My mother taught me about ENVY: “There are millions of less fortunate children in this world who don’t have a wonderful Mom like you do!”

THANKS, MOM!



“BEAM UP” ENERGY

MAY 3

 In the ‘Star Trek” Adventures, they would always be telling Scotty to “beam me up”.  In one episode, they explained that the “transporter” would energize the cells to such an amazing speed that the molecules would be sent through the air to whatever area it was aimed at.

   I always wished that there was some sort of “energy” that would catapult me into some target areas.  Then this week I read Colossians 1:29. “To this end I also labor, striving according to His WORKING which WORKS in me mightily.”

   So the words here translated “Working” and “Works” are both forms of the English word “Energy”  So if I strive according to His ENERGY which ENERGIZES me, then I “can do all things”. 

   Paul reminds us not to “be weary IN well doing”.  Then only way to so that is to work in God’s Energy.  In order to avoid what is termed “burnout” we need to check to see in who’s energy we are operating.

 

 

WHAT MY MOTHER TAUGHT ME

My mother taught me RELIGION: When I spilled grape juice on the carpet, she instructed, “You better pray the stain will come out of the carpet.”

My mother taught me LOGIC: From her decisive words, “Because I said so, that’s why.”

My mother taught me FORESIGHT: “Make sure you wear clean underwear, in case you’re in an accident.”

My mother taught me IRONY: “Keep laughing, and I’ll give you something to cry about.”

My mother taught me about STAMINA: “You’ll sit there ’til all that spinach is finished.”

THANKS, MOM!



THE WORRY SHADOW

APRIL 30

Fear is a poor chisel to carve out tomorrow. Worry is simply the triumph of fear over faith.

            There’s a story that is told about a woman who was standing on a street corner crying profusely. A man came up to her and asked why she was weeping. The lady shook her head and replied: “I was just thinking that maybe someday I would get married.  We would later have a beautiful baby girl.  Then one day this child and I would go for a walk along this street, come to this corner, and my darling daughter would run into the street, get hit by a car, and die.”

            Now that sounds like a pretty ridiculous situation – for a grown woman to be weeping her eyes out because of something that would never happen.  Yet isn’t this the way we respond when we worry?  We take a situation or event which might never exist and build it up all out of proportion in our mind.

            There is an old Swedish proverb that says, “Worry gives a small thing a big shadow.”  Worry is simply the misuse of God’s creative imagination which He has placed within each of us.  When fear rises in our mind, we should learn to expect the opposite in our life.

            The word worry itself is derived from an Anglo-Saxon term meaning “to strangle” or “to choke off.”  There is no question that worry and fear in the mind does choke off the creative flow from above.

            Things are seldom as they seem. “Skim milk masquerades as cream.” Said W.S. Gilbert. As we dwell on and worry about matters beyond our control, a negative effect begins to set in. Too much analysis always leads to paralysis.  Worry is a route which leads from somewhere to nowhere. Don’t let it direct your life.

            In Psalm 55:22 the Bible says, Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he shall sustain thee; He shall never suffer the righteous to be moved. Never respond out of fear, and never fear to respond. Action attacks fear; inaction builds fear.

            Don’t worry and don’t fear. Instead, take your fear and worry to the Lord. Casting all your care upon him for he careth for you. (1 Peter 5:7)

            John L. Mason, An Enemy Called Average

 

All I Really Need to Know I Learned From Noah’s Ark

  1. Plan Ahead. It wasn’t raining when Noah built the ark.
  2. Stay fit. When you’re 600 years old, someone might ask you to do something REALLY big.
  3. Don’t listen to critics–do what has to be done.
  4. Build on high ground.
  5. For safety’s sake, travel in pairs.
  6. Two heads are better than one.
  7. Speed isn’t always an advantage.
  8. The cheetahs were on board, but so were the snails.
  9. If you can’t fight or flee–float!
  10. Don’t forget that we’re all in the same boat.
  11. Remember that the ark was built by amateurs and the Titanic was built by professionals.
  12. Remember that the woodpeckers inside are often a bigger threat than the storm on the outside.
  13. Don’t miss the boat.
  14. No matter how bleak it looks, if God is with you, there’s always a rainbow on the other side.



 

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